On Monday, a public hearing was held in Hartford to tighten laws on gun storage safety. The bipartisan bill for gun storage safety would make it required for both loaded and unloaded guns to be safely stored in homes occupied by minors and people not allowed to legally have access to firearms.
Ethan's Law would be a law requiring the safe storage of all firearms, whether loaded or unloaded in a home with a minor under the age of 18.
Ethan’s Law is named after Ethan Song. Ethan was a Guilford teen who accidentally shot and killed himself last January at a friend’s house. The gun was only stored in a cardboard box in a bedroom closet.
Ethan’s parents, Mike and Kristin Song, spoke before and at the hearing, pushing for a law that would require all guns to be stored properly. Ethan’s Law would change the definition of a minor in a home from age 16 to 18 when it comes to gun storage. Also, anyone who violates the safe storage laws could face criminal consequences.
“I want to tell you, although I may sound passionate, this is obviously the last place you would want to be as a parent. You wouldn't want to be standing up talking about how your child, through the negligence of guns and ammo stored in cardboard boxes and not monitored by an adult, is now no longer here physically with us,” said Mike.
Mark Barden, the founder of Sandy Hook Promise, who lost his son in the Sandy Hook shooting six years ago also spoke as an advocate for the law.
“If you identify as a responsible gun owner, then you agree that guns should be safely stored and out of the reach of young children and if you don't do that, then there should be accountability,” said Barden.
The Connecticut Citizens Defense League President, Scott Wilson, said in a statement in part “If Connecticut lawmakers are serious about reducing gun accidents involving children, they need to develop a plan or implement one of several plans that exist already. The proposed law calls for punitive action, whereas our plan offers preventative safety measures that might actually protect children from harm or death."